Broadcasters covering the Miss France beauty pageant have been blasted after accidentally screening topless footage of one of the contestants.

Presenter Sylvie Tellier was interviewing some of the women in the dressing room for French channel TF1 the gaffe occurred.

Miss Aquitaine, Carla Bonesso, who was getting ready in the background, appeared topless while another contestant appeared with her breasts barely covered.

Ms Tellier, who is the national director of Miss France Organisation, described the incident as a major gaffe.

She said: “This should not have happened. This is a big mistake on our part and it has spoiled this show a little.”

And the unfortunate Miss Bonesso, 20, added: “I was not quite naked, it was an accident. But TF1 did not manage its cameras well.

“It was not at all professional.”

She was asked on social media whether she would be pursuing a complaint against the broadcaster and replied: “I do not know.”

The topless footage sparked controversy on Twitter where one user pointed out it could have potentially undermined the whole contest.

Franck Broqua, the director of the television coverage, said he had wanted a camera behind the scenes “to be closer to the candidates” as they prepared for the event.

It had worked well in rehearsals but the cameraman had moved during the live event giving him a wider camera angle.

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